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1 – Accessing planning guidance, support and training

Clusters should be able to access appropriate and timely expert planning advice and support, reference current planning guidance, and access suitable training/ resources to develop in-house planning capabilities.

National planning guidance
National planning guidance is available to inform cluster annual plans in the following guises:

  • NHS Wales planning frameworks: Guidance to help health boards and trusts complete their integrated medium term plans.
  • Cluster annual plan submission requirements: A plan template and supporting materials, co-developed by SPPC and PHW with input from Directors of Primary and Community Care (DPCCs) and Welsh Government, is issued separately:
  • Pan-cluster planning group (PCPG) planning requirements: There will be a Transition Year to update engagement and planning arrangements and to strengthen existing needs assessments and integrated medium term plans (IMTPs):
    • 2022-23 No guidance issued
    • 2023-24 TBC
  • Ministerial PCMW/ transformation milestones/ priorities: The Minister for Health and Social Services may issue in-year priorities by letter in the form of Primary Care Model for Wales (PCMW)/ transformation milestones, or wider priorities, with the expectation that cluster (and health board) plans reflect these:

National training and learning resources
Opportunities to develop in-house planning capability and capacity may be sought. National resources include the following:

  • NWSSP Planning Programme for Learning (PP4L): A planning academy has been established to strengthen planning skills, with good liaison between the NHS Wales planning community and Welsh Government. It encompasses a Diploma in Healthcare Planning (here), workshops, master classes, and learning events.
  • ​Planning and promoting learning resources (hosted by SCW): Insights into planning, commissioning and co-production under the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014; toolkit supporting Regional Partnership Boards (RPBs) to devise Area Plans.
  • Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW): Resources to integrate and grow expertise and capability in planning, developing, shaping, and supporting the health workforce.
  • Academi Wales: A range of learning resources, courses and events and networks aimed at leaders and managers.
  • Welsh NHS Confederation: Topics (e.g. finance, population health, etc.), networks, leadership support, publications, events, and news.
  • Health service development and planning (part of the Public Health Textbook): HealthKnowledge is a ‘one stop shop’ that will provide you with all the public health learning materials, whatever your current competency.

Local planning advice and support
Advice and support to clusters may be available from your local primary care team, including via cluster development support officers (CDSOs).

Local public health advice and support
Public health advice can be wide-ranging and will typically advocate for planning focus on improving population health outcomes, prioritising prevention/ early detection of avoidable harms, and reduction of inequalities in access and health outcomes. Advice and support to clusters may be available from your local public health team: